John Leguizamo Joked He Would Play Gwyneth Paltrow In Ski Accident Trial Series
By now, you’ve probably already heard of Gwyneth Paltrow’s much-documented ski accident trial. 76-year-old retired optometrist Terry Sanderson is suing the Goop star for allegedly crashing into him while skiing in Park City, Utah back in 2016.
However, Paltrow is countersuing him, saying he crashed into her— and is asking for a symbolic $1 if she wins. As many have remarked, this is pretty much the whitest trial to ever exist, involving Paltrow saying she “lost half a day of skiing” after the accident and yes, even talking about her sort-of-friendship with Taylor Swift.
As you may know, John Leguizamo has a talent for finding the funny in pretty much anything — not that it’s too hard to find some absurdity in Paltrow’s ongoing trial. Still, Leguizamo’s recent gig guest hosting “The Daily Show” took a shot at the trial in one of the funniest ways possible, and it’s a must-watch.
Leguizamo’s spot guest-hosting “The Daily Show” took a shot at Latino representation in Hollywood
The “Chef” star started off one of his “Daily Show” segments on Monday by pointing at Hollywood’s representation problem. He said, “It’s such an honor to be a voice for Latinos on TV and film, but as I also always say, I wish the honor wasn’t so rare.” The actor then included a frustrating statistic: Latinos make up 18% of the U.S. population, but only 5% of speaking roles onscreen.
As Leguizamo puts it, “It’s crazy. Latinos are almost 20% of the country, but we’re barely represented in film and television.” Poking fun at the vast proportion of box-office hits being set in “the multiverse,” the actor asked: “You’re telling me there ain’t one dimension that’s in The [Washington] Heights?” Leguizamo always hits the nail on the head.
The star then brought up a fact he has rallied against in the past: James Franco being cast as Fidel Castro in the upcoming movie “Alina of Cuba.” Leguizamo first expressed his disapproval of the casting decision back in August 2022, writing on Instagram: “How is this still going on? How is Hollywood excluding us but stealing our narratives as well? No more appropriation Hollywood… I don’t got a prob with Franco but he ain’t Latino!” Truly, who thought that was a good idea?
Fast forward to this week, and Leguizamo has (rightfully) not let that appropriative casting decision go. He brought it up again, but this time around, he has a new solution. The actor said, “Guess what, if white people can take our roles, I’ll take theirs.” And the new role he’s gunning for has us rolling on the floor.
This is who Leguizamo might want to play next
Leguizamo joked, “When they do the TV series based on Gwyneth Paltrow’s ski accident trial, I’m going to be Gwyneth Paltrow.” And that purposefully-bad Photoshop of his face on Paltrow’s picture inside the courtroom? Gold.
After that, it was time for the actor’s hilarious skit recalling his own experience in castings throughout the years. It’s another must-see: Leguizamo plays a total of three different casting directors, plus a younger version of himself after auditioning. After his emotional performance, the all-white roundup of casting directors start giving him feedback… and it’s every bit as wince-inducing as it is funny.
One casting director starts, “I’m impressed, you’re very articulate” (ugh), and another chimes in, “Oh yeah, no accent, full sentences.” Another whispered with a sly smile, “I almost forgot you’re not white,” while the director next to him agrees, “Can you imagine if you were white? Superstar alert.”
At the point, the movie execs want to rename him “Tom” like Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks, and start calling him “Tom Tom” (LOL). Later, they want him to be “more Latin” in his performance, but “less Latin” at the same time. They then say something even more frustrating, if that was possible: “Latin people don’t want to see Latin people, they want to see white people. White people named Tom.”
Shortly after, the casting directors start taking “hits” of ketchup, which they call “spicy” like hot sauce. Yep, Leguizamo is a comic genius.
Leguizamo’s skit was based on his real life experience
The skit is hilarious, but also clearly meant to represent the reality Leguizamo lived throughout his acting career since the late 80s. He told the Academy Awards’ Seen series back in January 2022 that he was really once told by studio execs that “Latin people don’t want to see Latin people” onscreen. They told him that Latinos “don’t want to see feel-good movies,” and Leguizamo remembers staying “out of the sun” to keep his skin lighter in order to find work in Hollywood.
Now, the actor is all about paying it forward to “la cultura,” describing: “I don’t want any Latin kid to go through what I went through. I don’t want any white kid, Black kid, Asian kid [to go through what I went through].” And yes, he wants to play Gwyneth Paltrow, too, and we’re kind of into it.